Broncos star Payne Haas’ family hell as his mother is accused of causing fatal car crash

The father of Broncos star Payne Haas has spoken out about family hell after his partner was arrested over a horror car crash that left three people dead.

Uiatu ‘Joan’ Taufua, 46, was taken into police custody after allegedly causing a fiery car crash in the Gold Coast Hinterland on December 30.

The footballer’s mother was reportedly driving her black Mercedes through Bonogin when she crashed into a silver Mercedes, killing all occupants: Susan Zimmer, 70, her partner Chris Fawcett, 79, and her daughter Stephanie, 35.

While Taufau remains behind bars awaiting her fate, her partner of 28 years and the father of her 10 children, Gregor Haas, has revealed that it is “f***ed” to see his wife in prison while he struggles to run their household alone.

Uiatu ‘Joan’ Taufua, 46, (pictured) has been charged with causing a car crash that killed three people

Taufau is the mother of footy star Payne Haas, who is pictured during the round 19 NRL match between the Parramatta Eels and the Brisbane Broncos at CommBank Stadium on July 21, 2022

Taufau is the mother of footy star Payne Haas, who is pictured during the round 19 NRL match between the Parramatta Eels and the Brisbane Broncos at CommBank Stadium on July 21, 2022

The revelation comes as Ms Zimmer’s daughter, Claudine Snow, broke her silence on Sunday to reveal she is still trying to get her life back on track after losing her three family members five months ago.

Speaking about the life-changing accident, Mr Haas said the first four weeks were extremely difficult as he struggled with the possibility of losing his seriously injured wife and tried to keep his family afloat.

Now he is trying to get on with life and get back to routine for the sake of their children.

‘Life must go on. The children have to go to school. I have to work. Otherwise everything will fall apart,” he said The Daily Telegraph.

“As a family we have come into our shells. We don’t really have to deal with anyone and that’s a good thing. We have our little family unit and it’s my job to make sure the kids are safe and happy.”

On the day of the accident, Mr. Haas arrived on the scene – five minutes down the road from their home – to discover two smoldering cars and police officers telling him his partner might not survive.

Four days later, his wife was released from hospital and taken to the guard house by a police guard, where she faced a series of charges.

Taufua has since been housed in Southern Queensland Correctional Centre, west of Brisbane, charged with three counts of manslaughter, dangerous operation of a motor vehicle, evading police, driving without a license and driving under the influence.

It is not the first time the family has faced adversity, with the couple losing one of their children, the paralyzed son Chace, to respiratory failure three years ago at the age of 21.

In an eerie coincidence, Chace was left paralyzed and on a ventilator after the car he was in with his mother and father, then pregnant with Payne, crashed into a tree on a Canberra Highway in 1999, killing their friend who was driving to life came.

The father-of-ten revealed that the crash was the source of his NRL prop son Payne Lucky Haas’s name – due to the pain of the moment and the fact that he was lucky to be alive.

Payne Haas (left) is pictured with his father Gregor at the 2019 Dally M Awards

Payne Haas (left) is pictured with his father Gregor at the 2019 Dally M Awards

Haas with brother Chace, who tragically passed away in 2020 after unexpected respiratory failure

Haas with brother Chace, who tragically passed away in 2020 after unexpected respiratory failure

Mr Haas said the accident has changed their lives dramatically and while there will be little sympathy for Taufau, she did a fantastic job looking after Chace and people without disabled children will not be able to understand how difficult it was for them.

While admitting that his childhood sweetheart, whom he met at age 17, was not perfect – as no human being is – Mr Haas said she was a “loving mother” and that he “loves her to death and never will change’.

Now that Mr Haas is essentially a single father looking after six of their school-aged children, he said he appreciates how much his partner did for their family “on a daily basis”.

He’s still figuring out the ropes, but said his older kids – Gold Coast Titans player Klese, 17-year-old daughter, and the couple’s two “adopted sons”, Aryan, 20, and Kaha, 19, who joined the family for seven years. ago – have been a great help.

While the kids are at school, Mr. Haas drives to the jail every Wednesday to see his partner.

Each week he is allowed to visit the facility for an hour and make one video call – often from behind a glass panel, as the prison still enforces 1.5m Covid distancing rules.

He said his partner is still recovering physically and emotionally from the incident, in which she had a metal plate lodged in her chest and damaged her back, tailbone and shoulders.

While Mr. Haas has been outspoken about their family’s struggles, the reports have sparked anger and pain among the Zimmer’s relatives as they continue to process their grief.

Haas (pictured here on the right) with his disabled brother Chace as a child.  Chace was confined to a wheelchair in a 1999 car accident

Haas (pictured here on the right) with his disabled brother Chace as a child. Chace was confined to a wheelchair in a 1999 car accident

Steffanie Zimmer (left) and her mother Susan Zimmer (right)

Steffanie Zimmer (left) and her mother Susan Zimmer (right)

Susan Zimmer, 70, her partner Chris Fawcett, 79, and her daughter Stephanie, 35, were killed in the incident.

Claudine Snow, Ms Zimmer’s daughter, said she was still struggling with the loss of a loved one.

“It hurts to hear that that family is missing their mother, but mine will never come back to me,” Ms Snow told the Gold Coast Bulletin.

“It was an incredibly difficult Easter – the first holiday without my little sister and my mother.”

Mrs Snow moved from her home on the north coast of NSW to live in her mother’s house after the funerals of her loved ones.

The property is just a few miles from the Haas family’s home and deadly crash site – which she passes by almost every day.

The mother-of-three said she felt her children had been robbed of “so many memories” of their grandmother, aunt and step-grandfather.

“I regret the reality that this is permanent and when we celebrate Mother’s Day next month I will be the only one in my family who can be called Mom,” she said.

Last month, Taufau was heard via video link from prison at Southport Magistrates Court, where her lawyer Sophie Dagg asked for a seven-week extension to give her time to examine evidence.

Out of court, Ms Dagg said her client was “deeply remorseful.”

“These are very tragic circumstances,” Ms. Dagg said.

“We just have our thoughts with the families involved.”

Taufau is due to appear in court on April 27.

Retired skin cancer specialist Chris Fawcett (pictured) also died in the Bonogin crash

Retired skin cancer specialist Chris Fawcett (pictured) also died in the Bonogin crash

Claudine Snow (pictured at the crash site on Sunday) lost her mother, sister and stepfather

Claudine Snow (pictured at the crash site on Sunday) lost her mother, sister and stepfather